Life is Beautiful Urban Art Festival, Downtown Las Vegas 2018

Creative house Justkids continues to transform Downtown Las Vegas into an open air art gallery for its sixth edition of the Life Is Beautiful Festival, curated by Charlotte Dutoit.

Artists invited for this edition included Marquis Lewis aka Retna, André Saraiva aka Mr. A, Lakwena, Bordalo II, Egle Zvirblyte, Sebastián Velasco, Saddo, Luke Pelletier and Aware. Adding to the already extensive list of world renowned artists that have contributed in the past editions of the festival.

American artist Marquis Lewis, known by his internationally-recognised tag Retna, added to the downtown footprint with a metallic mural piece between Ogden & 7th. The mural features his cryptically enchanting and iconic visual language with a special message dedication from the artist to the Las Vegas community.

“RETNA’s mural for Life is Beautiful aspires for a future, rooted in the myth of the past, featuring a quote of Crazy Horse, Chief of The Oglala Lakota: ‘I see a time of Seven Generations when all the colours of mankind will gather under the Sacred Tree of Life and the whole Earth will become one circle again’ “. Charlotte Dutoit

Paris-bred graffiti artist André Saraiva’s iconic alter-ego, known as Mr.A, has popped up in alleys and corners all over Downtown Las Vegas, with his cartoonish winking smiley face gracing the most unassuming yet intimate spaces of the town.

Play it again Mr.A! as he also painted pop-up pink pianos, inviting all passerby’s to create a tune.

In addition to his signature street art pieces, Andre opened up an unexpected addition to Las Vegas nightlife: The Empty Club; a lonely rotating disco ball floating in the middle of the empty mirrored room of a former gas station that now illuminates the busy intersection of Fremont and 8th Street.

London artist Lakwena brought her iconic kaleidoscope uplifting colour block work to the max, creating her biggest mural project yet with a 120 feet long wall, towering over the festival grounds. She also integrated her art as artist ambassador & designer of the Life is Beautiful eclectic visual identity for this year’s music lineup poster, signage and visual ID.

Portuguese activist and ecologic artist Bordalo II, has delivered his most ambitious trash animal installation to date entitled Wild Wild Waste, powered by, debuting a 10,000 square feet world of trash on display in a former 50’s Motel. The eye popping zoo parody aims to draw attention to a current global problem, human waste production and the commodification of animal habitats, all the while offering viewers the ultimate destination for a creative funhouse.

Lithuanian artist, London based Egle Zvirblyte created an cosmically explosive wall on 7th Street, bursting with shapely figures, colour and fertility where animal and woman grapple for creation, to produce a vibrant take on desire, vulnerability and female empowerment.

Spanish artist Sebastián Velasco also took over the downtown festival footprint, with his first piece in the USA, a striking ninety degree diptych presenting his honest and eloquent interpretation of Las Vegas nightlife mythology, unique architecture and street culture, capturing the city of lights and its souls with beautiful contrast.

The Romanian contemporary artist, illustrator and muralist Saddo travelled to downtown Las Vegas to create his first mural piece in the USA as well, featuring an unique take on Elvis, blending aesthetics of naturalistic and naive illustrations, pop orthodox, East Europe folklore, hip-hop culture and comics.

Recapturing the multiple dimensions of the America essence, United States street artist Aware from the Indecline activist crew, gave colour, depth and visibility to the original red white and blue with his brand new mural contribution to his hometown.

Contributing artist Luke Pelletier, from Los Angeles, also joined in the roster creating the official art poster for Life is Beautiful’s 2018 edition featuring his cleverly playful tourists’ lore and cheeky characters. The limited edition art poster is available for sale at the Life is Beautiful official website.

Straight from Sweden contemporary artist Joakim Ojanen painted his first mural for Life is Beautiful.

The design and architectural technology company Stereobot’s lit up the festival grounds, enhancing the visual experience design of Downtown Las Vegas, with a compelling structural installation made of 100% sustainable elements. The organic form came to life during the festival weekend, providing shelter and wonder to many.

Justkids and Life is Beautiful continue to elevate the festival art program every year, setting the bar high by providing unparalleled access and experiences from some of the world’s most sought-after
visual artists and offering a new perspective to enjoy the city and its people.

Life is Beautiful’s open-air gallery is a scene to be seen, event when all the music, comedy and culinary happenings are packed up & gone. When visiting Las Vegas, make sure to visit the downtown.



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